Memorable Manitobans: Eldon Franklin Simms (1907-1964)
Educator, school inspector.
Born at Bath, New Brunswick on 31 August 1907, son of James Randolph Hartley Simms and Ida May Shaw (1875-1915), and sibling of Frederick Webster Simms and Mary Ethel Simms, he came to Winnipeg in 1920 and attended Earl Grey School, Kelvin High School, and the Central Normal School.
He began teaching at John H. Gunn School around 1928 then became its Principal (1928-1929), followed with Principal tenure at Governor Semple School (1929-1931), Victory School (1935-1936), and Centennial School (1936-1940). In 1940, he was appointed a Manitoba School Inspector based at Portage la Prairie, serving there and at St. Vital until his death. He received BA and MEd degrees from the University of Manitoba, the latter in 1944.
On 21 April 1930, he married Margaret Elena Thorne (?-?) at Winnipeg. They had a son and a daughter. He served as President and Secretary of the Manitoba Inspectors’ Association, and founding member of the Canadian Association of School Superintendents and Inspectors. He was a member of the St. Mark’s Anglican Church and Winnipeg Canoe and Golf Club. In 1953, he published a history of the St. Mary’s la Prairie Anglican Church.
Birth and marriage [James R. H. Simms, Ida M. Shaw] registrations, New Brunswick Vital Statistics.
Marriage registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
1901 and 1911 Canada censuses, Automated Genealogy.
Annual Reports of the Manitoba Department of Education, Manitoba Legislative Library.
“Church observes Education Week,” Winnipeg Free Press, 20 February 1937, page 18.
“Churches observe Education Week,” Winnipeg Free Press, 8 February 1938, page 11.
“Education Week to be observed,” Winnipeg Tribune, 4 February 1939, page 14.
“Eldon Simms new Inspector of Schools,” Winnipeg Free Press, 8 October 1940, page 7.
Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 28 July 1964, page 19.
A Historical Study of Public Education in West Kildonan to 1959 by Raymond Ronald Bailey, MEd thesis, University of Manitoba, 1966.
Page revised: 5 August 2023